Provost’s Graduate Academic Engagement Fellowship at the Netter Center (PGAEF@NC)

The Provost's Graduate Academic Engagement Fellowship at the Netter Center for Community Partnerships (PGAEF@NC) is an opportunity for PhD students across all schools and fields at the University of Pennsylvania. Fellows are outstanding students who are involved in community-engaged scholarship and related activities, including Academically Based Community Service (ABCS), participatory action research, service-learning, and learning by teaching in public schools.

The terms of the fellowship are as follows: 

  • Fellows serve as instructors for ABCS seminars and/or work on community-engaged research in partnership with and focused on West Philadelphia/Philadelphia.
  • The fellowship is two years long. The first year is for professional development and preparing for the course, and the second year is for undertaking the course and/or research. 
  • Fellows participate in an interdisciplinary faculty-student seminar on community-engaged research and teaching, which meets monthly during the academic year for both years.
  • Fellows meet with each other and Netter Center staff monthly.

The funding of the fellowship includes: 

  • A research fund of $5,000 to use over the course of your fellowship and additional funds as needed to attend and present at conferences. 
  • One year of the fellowship includes full funding for one academic year, inclusive of stipend, tuition, general fee, clinical fee and health insurance, the amounts of which are determined in accordance with the policy of the University and of your school. 
  • Funding for one summer stipend, the amount of which is determined in accordance with your school's policy. 

Provost's Graduate Academic Engagement Fellows will also be encouraged to publish scholarly articles and will have an opportunity to present their research to schools and community organizations in West Philadelphia that partner with the Netter Center. Working through the Netter Center, particularly its university-assisted community schools program, they will actively engage with West Philadelphia, and their work as Fellows will inform their future scholarship.


PhD Students will be eligible to apply in the spring semester of their first year of study or any year thereafter provided they have at least two years left in their program at the start of the next term.

Each applicant must have a Penn faculty sponsor to help oversee the student’s project. The sponsor may be the student’s advisor or another relevant faculty member.

Application Process and Timeline:

  • Applications are open HERE
  • Applications include:
    • A personal statement addressing past experience with community-engaged scholarship, Academically Based Community Service (ABCS), or related activities; plans for the two-year period of the fellowship; and how the fellowship will support future research and career interests
    • Unofficial graduate transcript(s)
    • Two letters of recommendation including one from the faculty sponsor.
      • Faculty sponsor FAQ is here.
  • We would be pleased to provide recommendations and feedback at any point in the process. Moreover, students are encouraged to send drafts of their proposal to

For more information: 

Read more about previous fellows:

2019-2021 Fellows

2020-2022 Fellows 

2021-2023 Fellows 

2022-2024 Fellows

2023-2025 Fellows